Bo’ness and Kinneil Railway boosted by £234,000 National Lottery grant

Bo’ness and Kinneil Railway is set to benefit from a huge National Lottery Heritage Fund grant.

The Scottish Railway Preservation Society (SRPS), which manages the site, has been awarded additional funding of over £234,000 towards its Steaming Ahead project – bringing the total to £975,800.

The project involves the construction of a new engineering facility which will be used to care for a steam locomotive collection and other rolling stock.

It will also help to train volunteers and apprentices and improve the visitor experience, with a new level walking route added to the proposed engineering facility.

Bo'ness and Kinneil Railway has previously been visited by the Flying Scotsman. Picture: Michael Gillen.

This will include a viewing gallery featuring interpretative material to help people understand its function.

Work will start soon on the engineering facility and a museum entrance.

Other elements of the project will begin in the middle of next year, with the work due to be completed by the autumn.

Ensuring the engineering skills needed to care for and operate steam locomotives are passed on to a new generation is a key objective.

A training scheme that will benefit many of SRPS’ 400 volunteers forms part of this, while an apprenticeship and trainee initiative will deliver other benefits.

Four apprentices will train through the Modern Apprenticeship scheme.

In association with Falkirk Council, the five-year project aims to provide up to 20 13-week trainee placements for those looking to acquire skills to help them into the workplace.

Two new members of staff will be recruited to oversee training.

Steve Humphreys, SRPS chairman, said: “After a very bleak year, this really has come as ray of sunshine and will give us something tangible to celebrate next autumn in our 60th year when we would hope to hold an event formally to open the new engineering facility.

“In what has been a very difficult year for everyone, we are delighted that we can finally begin this exciting project that will bring lasting benefit to the society.

"The new engineering facility and the visitor experience it will bring will tie in nicely with a journey on our steam trains and a visit to Scotland’s largest railway museum, making for a really great day out for everyone.”

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